A BUS company is celebrating after winning national recognition for the second time in 12 months.

Brighton and Hove Buses was named city operator of the year at the prestigious annual UK Bus Awards.

This follows the best bus company prize it was given at the National Transport Awards in October.

At a ceremony in London on Tuesday, commendations were also given to electrical engineer Ashley Burrows and the company’s Bus Times guide.

Popular driver Phil Hadley was given a bronze award and the firm had an overall silver award for UK Bus Operator of the Year.

Managing director Martin Harris said: ‘I’m very privileged to work with such talented and dedicated people.

“This is everyone from great drivers such as Phil to those who work tirelessly behind the scenes like Ashley and marketer Mike Cheesman who has edited Bus Times for the last 30 years.

“I’m delighted all my colleagues and their huge efforts have been recognised in this way.

“Winning the double in the same year is extremely rare if not unique and is a huge tribute to the people who work for the bus company.

“We’ve worked hard to make the company a great place to work and clearly some of that is now beginning to show.

“We can’t do what we do without the support of our partners in the city, in particular Brighton and Hove City Council.

“The council makes it possible for us to deliver an award-winning bus service for our customers.”

Mr Burrows was nominated in the unsung hero category.

He is responsible for ensuring the state-of-the-art real-time information kit is reliable.

The system is fitted into each of the firm’s 280 buses and the only one of its kind outside London.

It tells drivers about their route, the next stop, scheduled times for each stop and the current time.

The system also indicates whether the bus is running late or early and by how much.

Mr Burrows is also working on a pioneering hearing loop system for the whole fleet of buses via the real-time audio kit to help customers who are hard of hearing.

Mr Hadley, who was also highly commended in the National Transport Awards, was recognised in the top national driver category.

He was nominated for the number of compliments he receives from passengers.